Captain Morgan helps fire Barking & Dagenham girls into Southern Counties final
PUBLISHED: 09:00 14 March 2019
Barking & Dagenham’s girls are into the final of the Southern Counties Cup for a second year in a row after beating Thurrock 2-0 at the weekend.
Sublime finishes from captain Ellie Morgan and Kaltrina Ibrahimi capped a fine first-half display and gave the district squad a lead they never looked like squandering.
The first attempt on goal came after just 10 seconds when the hosts gave away possession and a surprise snap shot almost caught Mei Wang off guard, before she gathered at the second attempt.
It proved the only shot on target for Thurrock as most of the play was in a congested midfield.
Barking & Dagenham took the lead on nine minutes when Kayla Grain fired a pass to Morgan on the edge of the box and she showed great control before unleashing a dipping half-volley on the turn over the keeper.
It took Morgan to seven goals for the season, one behind her tally for last term with many games to come.
And her side doubled their lead seven minutes later when Grain picked out Lily-Mae Elsey on the right and she beat her marker and raced down the line, before finding Ibrahimi, who found the bottom corner.
As the half wore on, the hosts continued to create chances, with Elsey finding Ibrahimi in the box again, however the William Ford midfielder’s shot lacked power.
Miquellah Meade saw a glancing header flash wide from Ibrahimi’s inswinging corner before Meade and Grain joined forces to set up Northbury’s Elsey, whose drilled shot flew just wide of the post.
Elisha Mintah-Adarkwah and Kirsten McNaughton dominated in defence after the restart, although Aisha Amao beat the offside trap late on and fired wide with Wang well beaten.
A stunning last-ditch tackle by Mintah-Adarkwah denied the visitors a certain goal after McNaughton stumbled, but they were the only sights of goal for Thurrock.
And Barking & Dagenham now face a final against Gloucester on May 6, with both sides having won one game each in previous meetings this season.
Barking & Dagenham: Wang, Meade, Morgan (all Henry Green), Sharpe (Gascoigne), English (Roding), Grain (Richard Alibon), Elsey (Northbury), McNaughton, Adarkwah (both George Carey), Ibrahimi (William Ford), Owusu-Abeiye (Valence), Abela (Dorothy Barley).
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